We went last night to Brioso, the new Mexican place in the old Toucan (?) spot at 4603 N. Lincoln. It's a pleasant, but small, room (though they have sidewalk dining too) - their menu is pretty simple, with a selection of appetizers (about half of which are salads), a selection of tacos, and a selection of entrees. We had the spicy grilled shrimp skewer and the guacamole to start with, followed by the pork tenderloin for my husband and the Pick 3 tacos for me.
The food was all compatently done, but nothing fantastic. The guacamole was sort of soupy and too acidic for our taste (although it was nicely spicy). The shrimps were skewered with cherry tomatoes and baby tomatillas, grilled and served on a bed of tomatilla salsa (which we used to augment the tinsy serving of red salsa that came with the complimentary tostaditas).
For my three tacos I chose the grilled skirt steak, the 3-cheese with rajas, and the slow-roasted pork. They were good, but came in what may have been flour tortillas (I can't believe I didn't really notice - I must have been distracted by all the margaritas). My favorites were the cheese and the pork ones - the steak one had big, chewy chunks of steak, if you like that sort of thing. My husband's pork was very plain, but he warmed to it as the meal went on. For dessert we took home a slice of their chocolate and pine nut pie (very tasty).
Service was friendly and helpful, and we were given a plate of three different salsas when the waiter noticed we were eating the stuff off the shrimp skewer plate. The Metromix review said they have a wide selection of tequilas, but we saw no list, and the margaritas were not offered with a premium tequila option, so we just had the house margaraita, which seemed light on the booze.
All in all, a nice place to have in the neighborhood, but if we had to drive there we wouldn't go to the trouble. This review sounds pretty negative as I re-read it - we did enjoy our meal there, but I think I was just disappointed that it wasn't better, given all the excellent options for other cuisines in the area.
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